Trendspotting is a term that’s very widely used in the fashion industry, and it’s not uncommon for top designers to splurge and send their curators across the world only to spot what the latest fashion trends are. Those at the forefront of the fashion industry are capable of predicting which colours consumers will want to wear in a particular season or year, well before the consumers themselves are aware of it.
The concept of trendspotting
Trendspotting can yield significant profits if identified accurately by an investor and this concept is fast becoming a trend in itself. So, what relevance does trendspotting have for a business owner? The fact is, you are already doing this every week, right through the year. It is covered in your:
- Key Strategic Indicators
- Key Performance Indicators
All these performance metrics tools help spot trends in data. If you don’t see it, you aren’t using it correctly and effectively. Trendspotting should be integrated into your employee feedback loop. When you regularly collect information from your team (no matter which way you do it), it can help provide valuable feedback that can be used to improve the workings of your business and its overall profitability.
How to trendspot
Over time, you will be able to notice the movement in trends and data. The analysis of your financial statements should always include the element of seeking trends such as:
- Are your sales always lower in the second quarter?
- Is your Cost of Sales becoming a major part of your revenue?
- Why was a certain line item that was popular suddenly stopped bringing in sales?
Trendspotting is something that doesn’t come easily to most people. But it is something you need to be aware of if you want to be a part of the latest marketing trend. Develop deep curiosity in things around you.
There are things you can do that will help you spot latest trends but there are also things you can avoid:
- Bad data- You cannot manage something you aren’t measuring. If you don’t know what’s working, you cannot come up with a strong marketing strategy. Collect relevant data, test and measure your strategies to see what clicked and what didn’t. And then work on that. It is important to have information and data you can rely on.
- Not setting expectations- When you are analysing data sets without any expectations you’re only getting half the job done. You are likely to take longer in spotting current trends and by the time you do, there may already be a new one. You need to keep your eye out on what’s working and also what isn’t. If there are negative trends, you are continuously making mistakes which can end up affecting your profitability. If you miss positive trends, you may miss the boat completely.
- Biases- Everyone approaches their work and expectations differently and looks for different results. All of this can give rise to biases that impact the way we pick up on or interpret trends. This is why it's important to complement your perspective with a reliable person who shares a different opinion or approach. This gives you the ability to take a more well-rounded view when you are looking for trends. After all, if you aren’t looking for something, you may not spot it at all.
The easy availability of sophisticated technology has made it quite easy for business owners to become trendspotters themselves.
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About the Author
Ben Fewtrell is a sought-after Business Coach, Keynote Speaker and trainer who has featured in Virgin’s Inflight Magazine and Entertainment Portal, SKY Business and “Secrets of Top Business Builders Exposed”. He is also the host of the popular Business Brain Food Podcast where he interviews leading experts on anything and everything business.